Thursday, February 7, 2013

Fibro Fog & Language Problems

I recently found this article that discusses fibro fog, specifically language problems.  I found it to be relevant because I am challenged at work by people who prefer face-to-face interactions or phone calls to my emails and texts.

Part of my job involves meaningful discussions with just about anyone else in my company.  Even if they could understand why I rely heavily on written communications, I don't think it's necessary for me to explain it to them all.  But when I hear myself talk in meetings sometimes, I have become painfully aware of how halting and imprecise I sound when I cannot find the appropriate words.  Even worse, it's distracting to me to have others tell me they cannot follow what I am saying.  Then I might lose my train of thought.
 As a compromise, when I need to discuss things with others, I find that starting to draft an email helps me figure out what I want to say, but then I make the phone call instead of emailing.  It doesn't help when unforeseen topics arise, but it's something.  Luckily I'm not easily embarrassed, so I keep pushing myself to be better despite the discomfort. It's a tough world out there sometimes, so I guess it's a good thing that I don't back down from challenges too easily.

Do you have these problems with words?  If so, what do you do to cope?


Friday, February 1, 2013

Attitude is Everything

I recently visited wonderful rheumatologist, to follow up on my last visit.  Good news! My blood pressure is no longer ridiculously high.  The last time I had it measured was mid-October by my gynecologist, who ordered me off Seasonique because of estrogen contributing to the high blood pressure.  Back then, it was as high as 150/97 (the last and highest of 3 readings in that one visit).  Today, it's down to 125/87 (the second and lower of 2 readings today).  According to the wikipedia page on Blood Pressure, I moved from stage 1 Hypertension to Prehypertension.  I'm just one category away from normal.  Isn't that what we fibromites all strive for?  Normal?  I'm getting there.

My doctor was also very proud of my improvements in overall pain levels and lifestyle changes to be healthier.  I've been eating healthier foods and making sure I get some exercise in at least every couple of days.  I'm keeping up Yoga on Wednesdays and my Whole Foods salad lunch habit.  I've also added elliptical workouts (usually 15 or 30 minutes) and climbing stairs in the building where I work.  (4 floors, up is all I can do right now, but I'm pretty impressed anyway.)

Since my symptoms are mostly under control, she is keeping me on my nightly Cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril) for muscle relaxing and sleep, and leaving the rest up to me to control by living my life as well as I can.  Being on few medications is just the way I like it!

Although, I have been noticing some more heart rhythm issues lately, especially upon waking, and I did not realize until looking up the link just now that this medication warns about that.  I've had atrial tachycardia since I was a teenager, and episodes are usually short, but can last hours, and they can be slight or kind of scary feeling.  I wish I'd known before my last appointment, so I could ask the doctor about it.  I'll have to note that and give her a call to see what she says about it.  Every doctor I've seen about it pretty much shrugs and says some people just have this and they aren't sure why.  One cardiologist offered to fix it with a new heart surgery that would cut the electrical route that triggers the arrhythmia.  I don't feel it's enough of a concern to risk surgery, so I am just kind of dealing with it.

Because I still mentioned that my right hip gets stiff if I sit too long, she also asked me to do several hip stretches every day.  She gave me a printout with instructions for five different ones to do.  I have been adding them to my morning routine already.

Oddly, though, after bragging about how great I've been doing, I had a weird kink in my back, headaches, knee pain, and some minor digestion issues, plus tinnitus and a weird hour-long episode of partial deafness in my right ear.  Did I jinx myself?  At any rate, I think I may just be paying attention to many of the things that were called out during the appointment, and feeling just about average for me lately, if that makes any sense.  I do still deal with FMS and the unpredictable symptoms.  But, I'm not going to worry about it and just assume it's nothing unusual.  I'm on my way to feeling more normal and feeling more in control of my health these days.  YAY!  Attitude is everything!

Wanna jump for joy with me?  Well, if you're not up to it, you can just do a mental happy dance, if you like. 
I Am a Dancing Fool